“Underground Economy Forums” Seized By European Authorities

Ever since the arrest of Ross Ulbricht, the creator as well as operator of the illegal darknet market Silk Road, and the subsequent shutdown of the website, the anonymity provided by the Tor network to darknet markets has been the subject of many discussions and debates. A lot has also been discussed about how dark web users do not get the anonymity they want. This has been made clear once again by the law enforcement authorities in the wake of a recent international investigation by European authorities that helped to pull down five darknet markets. These online black marketplaces have been purportedly referred to by the law enforcement agencies as “Underground Economy Forums.”

Underground Economy Forums

Investigation and Arrests in the Darknet Markets

The Underground Economy Forums constitute darknet markets or online black markets that sell or conduct transactions involving drugs, dangerous weapons, stolen credit card details, and fake identifications, among many others. Other websites related to the cyber world include illegal streaming, malware, and DDoS attacks. The recent investigations targeted operators of such services. During the investigations, it was also found out by the authorities that these darknet markets made use of bitcoins for executing their transactions.

Together with different arms of law enforcement agencies at international levels, the Center of Cybercrime Control and the Frankfurt Prosecutor General’s Office conducted raids on five operators of the Underground Economy websites. It is suspected that a 27-year-old Bosnian is the main operator of as many as three of these websites. He is believed to have been operating the sites since the year 2012. In addition to this, two Germans have also been arrested in this connection. The Germans aged 22 and 27 were also caught, and one is suspected to have been playing in the darknet markets for three years. The searches yielded 250,000 euros worth of drugs. A Syrian national has also been arrested on charges of synthesizing the amphetamines range of drugs. Further, several other searches resulted in the apprehension of three more German nationals, one of whom was arrested in Netherlands. Of these, a 21-year-old has been accused of running an illegal data streaming platform. The German arrested in Netherlands has been charged with dealing dangerous drugs such as amphetamine, cocaine and ecstasy through the online platforms.

In the wake of these investigations and arrests, the law enforcement agencies have been sending firm messages to young Internet users that it is easy for them to track down darknet markets and their perpetrators and prosecute them as per the existing laws. This is being done with the hope of keeping the youngsters away from their possible tryst with these darknet markets.

However, others see the shutdown of the Silk Road as responsible for facilitating the evolution of other darknet markets. Even when Silk Road is no longer present, other online black markets have sprung up in its place and continued to sell things that were banned in Silk Road. This includes guns as well as stolen data. Traders sell zero-day exploits to those who are ready to pay exorbitant amounts of money for them. These anonymous marketplaces continue to hog the limelight and are at the center of many controversies and investigations.

shutdown of the Silk Road

According to Giulio Prisco of CCN.LA, legal crackdown on the darknet markets is not the ultimate solution. This action would only push the activity into deeper morass and into the hands of other criminals. The shutdown of the more-principled operators may throw the doors open to the less-principled ones who would know only too well how to trick the law. Moreover, the darknet markets would become more open to selling even more dangerous things than just drugs.

In this context it is interesting to note that the dark web has also allowed a host of useful applications to thrive on the dark web that the IETF and IANA assigned a formal .onion domain last year.

Top 10 Most Popular Darknet Marketplaces

Calling all potential or current dark web sellers and buyers! Looking for the most popular markets on the dark web? Looking for your dream market? Today we outline the hottest online marketplaces on the dark web as of right now.

That’s right, we’ve swept out the cobwebs and there’s no more shut down markets on our updated list. Find out where is best to sell and buy online here.

Find your dream market. Check out our list below of the top ten most popular online black markets.

Quick Privacy Note: If you are using or wish to use any of the darknet markets then you need to be doubling up your security by combining the use of a good VPN with Tor. The Tor browser is not good enough by itself. The feds have been using many different ways lately to de-anonymize Tor users, if you also use a VPN then you have a double layer of security that protects your identity. You can check out what the good VPN’s are by clicking here.

1. AlphaBay

alphabay
AlphaBay is still the heaviest hitter in the game when it comes to the online black markets. Since its launch in November of 2014 it has grown to become the number one choice with buyers and sellers worldwide, with over 230,000 users. Unfortunately, this has led to a high number of scammers operating on the market, so if you’re buying on AlphaBay, remember to tread carefully.

AlphaBay URLhttp://alphabaywyjrktqn.onion
More Info: http://darkwebnews.com/darkwebmarkets/alphabay/
User Guide: http://alphabaymarket.com/alphabay-market-guide/

 

2. Nucleus Market

Alphabay-and-Nucleus-Market

Nucleus is another well used marketplace that has been around since late 2014. The site has many users but mixed reviews. In December 2015, many vendors were simply locked out of their accounts, sparking rumors of admins stealing Bitcoin. Nucleus has apparently resolved the issues now.

Nucleus is GONE. They performed and EXIT SCAM and took everyone’s bitcoins with them.

Nucleus Market URLhttp://nucleuspf3izq7o6.onion
More Info: http://darkwebnews.com/darkwebmarkets/nucleus-market/
User Guide: http://nucleusmarket.org/

 

2. Dream Market

Dream Market
Dream Market is a smaller marketplace than say Nucleus or AlphaBay; however, the quality of sellers and their products appears to be quite good. Dream Market has many refugees from the now defunct Agora marketplace. There is a higher commission on sales than other markets, with Dream Market taking 4% overall.

Dream Market URL:   http://ltxocqh4nvwkofil.onion
More Info: http://darkwebnews.com/dream-market-guide
User Guide: https://dreammarketdrugs.com/guide-on-how-to-access-the-dream-market-url/

 

3. Silk Road 3.0

upca

Silk Road 3.0 has been up and running for a while now. It didn’t take long after silk Road 2.0 was shut down for the next to rise up and take its name. For as long as there are Darknet Markets I think there will always be a Silk Road because of the name. Silk Road 3.0 has been growing in popularity and now has tons of listings. The fact that it is not getting a lot of publicity and not many people are talking abou tit is a good thing.

Silk Road 3.0 Market URL:   http://reloadedudjtjvxr.onion/
More Info: http://darkwebnews.com/darkwebmarkets/silk-road-3/
User Guide: http://silkroaddrugs.org/guide-on-how-to-access-the-silk-road-3-0

 

4. Crypto Market

cm
Apparently brought to you by the same team as Silk Road 3.0 – it also shares databases with the site. It is unclear whether the site is a good place to trade or not. The site itself has had significant downtime recently – apparently for upgrades, but who can be sure?

Crypto Market URLhttp://cryptomktgxdn2zd.onion
More Info: http://darkwebnews.com/darkwebmarkets/crypto-market/
User Guidehttp://silkroaddrugs.org/crypto-market-guide/

 

 

 

 

5. Outlaw Market

Outlaw Market
Not pulling any punches, Outlaw Market is for outlawed goods. Available since 2013, it is one of the smaller marketplaces around, and has had mixed reviews. There seems to be a bigger community of Dutch users here.

Outlaw Market URLhttp://outfor6jwcztwbpd.onion/indxx1.php
More Info: http://darkwebnews.com/darkwebmarkets/outlaw-market/

 

6. RAMP

russian anonymous marketplace
Speak Russian? Neither do we! RAMP stands for the Russian Anonymous Marketplace – and as such, is all in Russian. RAMP is the longest running darknet market still alive, founded in late 2012. The marketplace is forum based and apparently contains a lot of light drugs along with a few hard drugs, with dealers from Russia, Belarus and the Ukraine.

RAMP URLhttp://ramp2bombkadwvgz.onion
More Info: http://darkwebnews.com/dark-web-market-list/

 

7. Valhalla (Silkkitie)

ValhallaMarketplace
Valhalla, previously the Finnish marketplace Silkkitie is now available as English language, too. The site operates on an invite only system, which reportedly brings about more safety in trades. The marketplace has a nice layout, too.
To join Valhalla you’ll need an invite to join up though.

Valhalla (Silkkitie) URLhttp://silkkitiehdg5mug.onion
More Info: http://darkwebnews.com/dark-web-market-list/

 

8. Darknet Heroes League

Dhl_logo
With a name like Darknet Heroes League, you’d expect these guys to be a fantasy league of some sort, but no. The market contains a very small amount of vendors who have apparently been invited to sell on the platform. The site has a clean interface.

Darknet Heroes League URLhttp://darkheroesq46awl.onion
More Info: http://darkwebnews.com/dark-web-market-list/

 

9. Hansa Market
hansaHansa has only been online a few months, but so far, the reviews look good. Obviously, as it is a new marketplace, their as not as many vendors as others but it is progressively growing. The site proposes to be a more secure marketplace – so that admins cannot run away with the funds. Plus, the interface is very easy to get the hang of.

Hansa Market URLhttp://hansamkt3iph6sbb.onion
More Info: http://darkwebnews.com/dark-web-market-list/

Whether you’re a buyer or a seller, check out some of the above marketplaces to find your dream market on the dark web. Each marketplace will have their strengths and weaknesses, and which one you choose is up to you. We recommend reading about marketplace scams that exist before getting involved in buying or selling anything online.

And now good luck, and may you all find your dream market!